9 Shepley Street

Historical Narrative: 

Shawsheen Village was named after the Native American name for the river Shawshin, which means Great Spring. Prior to Shawsheen Village this area was known as Frye Village. Most of the streets in the new Village were named for Castles & Cathedrals in Great Britain. Shepley Street however is named for a person but, as yet, has not been substantiated. This land was once owned by Sylvester P. Smith (49 Union St) who had plans for a housing development. A 1901 map of Frye Village clearly shows the locations of Shepley & Binney Streets, but named Agawam and Merrick Streets respectively, both connected at the east end by Madison St. which was never built. Old deeds reference both earlier names.

This home was built as part of the Shawsheen Village development from 1918-1924 by William M. Wood, President of the American Woolen Company. Wood hired about eight different architects to design the homes and structures for the village. Homes were leased through the Homestead Association with offices in the Post Office building in Shawsheen Square, later moved into the Administration Building.

Each home incorporates a different look, style and design modifications, most noticeable with the front door entrances. Decorative details on the corner boards and a variety of ornamental trellises, window boxes all added the “icing on the cake, of the original designs. Most of the homes now sport a variety of different colors, no longer all white with green shutters as dictated in the original deeds. Many of the original screen porches have been enclosed for an additional room.

After the death of William M. Wood on Feb. 2, 1926 most of the residential and commercial buildings were then sold. Some were held by the Wood family in the "Arden Trust" and others with the American Woolen Company. The AWCo. Board of Directors authorized its President, Lionel J. Noah, to deliver all deeds, as deemed necessary to the Textile Realty Co. for sale on Dec. 29, 1931.

The Textile Realty then transferred ownership to the Andover Shawsheen Realty Company on June 30, 1932, holding the mortgage on the properties. T. Edwin Andrew, treasurer, was authorized to sell or lease the properties. With the Great Depression sales were sluggish and many homes were rented until the economy rebounded.

One of the first occupants of record to lease the home in 1926 were John & Elizabeth McLellan. John was a section hand for the American Woolen Co.

This house was sold to John H. & Rosann M. Grecoe on Sept. 25, 1936. John Grecoe owned Grecoe Jewelers at 56 Main St. in the Andover Center. The Grecoes later moved to Florence St. and rented the home. In 1943 John L. & Ethel A. Milliken were the tenants. John worked as a mechanic for the Merrimack Paper Co.. Their two daughters Jane, a nurse, and Natalie, a clerk at Merrimack Mutual Insurance Co. as live with their parents.

Grecoe sold to Arthur A. & Arleen E. Grenier on Jan. 2, 1946. Grenier family held the property for 25 years.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Maps, 1852, 1872, 1888, 1906, 1926
Andover Street Directories
Andover Townsman
Mills, Mergers and Mansions, by Edward Roddy 1982
See Map plan #876 – June 1932 – Textile Realty Co -Lot #27
Map #1050 – March 1937 – amended map #876 for narrowing street.

Sylvester Smith estate, of Worcester, MA
J. Walter Smith of Worcester, MA
Cleora L. Sumner, Trustee -
Henry P. Binney, Trustee of AWCo. - July 30, 1909 - b. 277 p. 314
American Woolen Co. Dec. 30, 1920 - b. 435 p. 215 -(3rd tract of paragraph 4)
Textile Realty Co. - Dec. 30, 1931 - b. 563 p. 344
Andover Shawsheen Realty Co. - June 30, 1932 - b. 565 p. 87
John H. & Rosann M. Grecoe - Sept. 25, 1936 - b. 601 p. 301
Arthur A. & Arleen E. Grenier - Jan. 2, 1946 - b. 680 p. 174
Marco J. Pettoruto - Apr. 14, 1965 - b. 1033 p. 187
Arthur A. Grenier - Nov. 9, 1965 - b. 1047 p. 470
William G. & Brenda Lee Shea, Jr. - Nov. 8, 1971 - b. 1182 p. 745
Brenda Lee Shea - Mar. 18, 1983 - b. 1653 p. 309

Inventory Data:

StreetShepley St
PlaceShawsheen Village - Frye Village
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Historic NameJohn H. & Rosann M. Grecoe House
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence - AWCo. housing
Construction Date1922 - 1923
Wall/Trimclapboard/wood/vinyl siding
Roofasphalt - gable
Major Alterationsenclosed front porch, vinyl siding, replacement windows
Acreage0.185 acre
Map and parcel34-27
Recorded byJames S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredOctober 9, 2015